According to multiple confirmed reports from Jay Glazer, John Clayton, and Adam Schefter, the Kansas City Chiefs have acquired quarterback Alex Smith from the San Francisco 49ers in exchange for the 34th overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft, as well as a conditional 2014 draft selection.
The Chiefs gave up a lot to get a guy like Smith, who is considered a ‘game manager’ by many, but also is coming off of what appeared to be arguably the best season of his career. With a new quarterback and a new head coach, the Chiefs have effectively addressed their top two needs on paper this offseason, and the official new league year has not yet begun. According to reports, the Chiefs also still plan on doing their darndest to lock up WR Dwayne Bowe and OT Branden Albert, which raises questions about their draft situation.
In my opinion, a 2nd round pick this year was about the most the Chiefs could have possibly given up for Smith. This is a very bold move by Andy Reid and John Dorsey, who now have some decisions to make. The strength of the 2013 NFL Draft class is its depth, not its top-end talent. This is actually a very non-star studded draft by all accounts, so the Chiefs are in an interesting spot.
Former general manager Scott Pioli thinks that the best fit for the Chiefs at number one overall is Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel, but what happens if the Chiefs bring back Branden Albert? The Chiefs have needs at safety and inside linebacker, but there are no prospects at those positions worth taking with the number one pick. They also have a need at WR, but that is also not an option with the top pick. The Chiefs’ other pressing need could be on the defensive line, where they are trying to re-structure Tyson Jackson’s massive rookie contract, and potentially could be losing former first round pick Glenn Dorsey.
With this trade, the Chiefs’ biggest remaining needs (provided Branden Albert is not back) are offensive tackle and defensive line, which are inarguably the top two positions in this draft. Luke Joeckel, Eric Fisher, Sharrif Floyd, Star Lotulelei, and Sheldon Richardson are among the players that could be in play for Kansas City with that number one overall pick. We have Joeckel slated there right now, but there are growing rumors that that could change in a hurry.
San Francisco’s Haul
The Niners already have one of the deepest rosters in the NFL, a roster which took them to the Super Bowl, and they now have a plethora of 2013 NFL Draft selections. With three projected compensatory picks on the way, the Niners are slated to have 15 selections come April with a loaded roster. There is no way they are keeping every one of those picks. They need some defensive line help as well as an influx of fresh blood in the secondary, and I think they could get really creative with some of these picks.
The need on the defensive line is pressing, with Justin Smith aging and some other players potentially leaving via free agency. With cap space now to play with and more than enough draft picks, this is one of the more enviable situations in the NFL right now. San Francisco has five picks in the first three rounds, and they could package some of those picks to move up and get a defensive line prospect like Sheldon Richardson or Star Lotulelei if he should fall.
Perhaps the Niners would also entertain the idea of trading up for a big name safety like Kenny Vaccaro of Texas.
Maybe the most intriguing scenario has the Niners trading a bunch of these picks for a guy like Percy Harvin, or maybe even Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis. If that happens, they won’t take too big of a hit in terms of their draft picks, and they now have some freedom under the cap to make such a move. The Niners have a bit of a weakness at cornerback going forward, and they need a big play receiver offensively. Those are some intriguing options.